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Business welcomes National's cross party offer

Business welcomes National's cross party offer on managing climate change policy

Business leaders will welcome the National Party's renewed offer today to reach cross party agreement on major policies to manage the country's coming climate change shocks.

The New Zealand Business Council for Sustainable Development whose members employ more than 50,000 people with sales equivalent to 30% of gross domestic product says a renewed move today by National's Environment spokesman, Dr Nick Smith, to offer cross-party policy making is welcome.

Business Council Chief Executive Peter Neilson says the policies needed to manage the potentially massive risks and opportunities posed by climate change over the next 30 to 50 years demand an approach which goes beyond the three year election cycle.

"Cross party agreements are being reached in other countries, and last week in California.

"We believe all party leaders here have a duty to state their position now on cross party deals to manage climate change. We expect there'll be a lot of debate over individual policy details, but we can no longer leave climate change management to three year policy auctions.

"Our research shows business decision makers here, as National has also acknowledged today, overwhelmingly believe climate change is happening and our response as a country should be managed as a priority.

"There are immense opportunities to be seized. The right policies will see New Zealanders make fortunes with new technology to produce bio fuel and reduce animal methane emissions. Other policies we are advocating to give cash incentives to buy fuel efficient, low emission cars and insulate the 40 out of every 100 homes which are causing massive illness, will also cut energy use and emissions.

"We can score some big wins as a nation, while managing through climate change challenges. The sooner parties work together the better for everyone."


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